A Long Dark Night: Race in America from Jim Crow to World War II

A Long Dark Night: Race in America from Jim Crow to World War II

by J. Michael Martinez

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For a brief time following the end of the U.S. Civil War, American political leaders had an opportunity—slim, to be sure, but not beyond the realm of possibility—to remake society so that black Americans and other persons of color could enjoy equal opportunity in civil and political life. It was not to be. With each passing year after the war—and especially after Reconstruction ended during the 1870s—American society witnessed the evolution of a new white republic as national leaders abandoned the promise of Reconstruction and justified their racial biases based on political, economic, social, and religious values that supplanted the old North-South/slavery-abolitionist schism of the antebellum era.

A Long Dark Night provides a sweeping history of this too often overlooked period of African American history that followed the collapse of Reconstruction—from the beginnings of legal segregation through the end of World War II. Michael J. Martinez argues that the 1880s ushered in the dark night of the American Negro—a night so dark and so long that the better part of a century would elapse before sunlight broke through. Combining both a “top down” perspective on crucial political issues and public policy decisions as well as a “bottom up” discussion of the lives of black and white Americans between the 1880s and the 1940s, A Long Dark Night will be of interest to all readers seeking to better understand this crucial era that continues to resonate throughout American life today.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781442259966
Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc.
Publication date: 04/14/2016
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 420
File size: 5 MB

About the Author

J. Michael Martinez is an attorney and author of numerous articles and five books, including Terrorist Attacks on American Soil: From the Civil War Era to the Present (2012), Coming for to Carry Me Home: Race in America from Abolitionism to Jim Crow (2011), and Carpetbaggers, Cavalry, and the Ku Klux, Klan: Exposing the Invisible Empire during Reconstruction (2007).

Table of Contents

List of Photographs
Introduction and Acknowledgments
Prologue: Race in America: ‘‘There Is Not a Black America and a White America and Latino America and Asian America’’

PART I: A Child of Misery
1 The Legacy of Reconstruction
2 Jumpin’ Jim Crow and Legal Segregation
3 Racial Violence and the Plight of the Freedmen

PART II: I’m Sometimes Up and Sometimes Down
4 The Rise of the Populist Movement
5 Southern Populism
6 Washington versus Du Bois

PART III: He’s Gone on High to Prepare a Place
7 The Great Migration
8 A Nadir of Race Relations
9 The Rise of a New Black Culture
10 Southern Justice, a Depression, and a War
Epilogue: The Postwar American Landscape: ‘‘White Prejudice and Negro Standards Thus Mutually ‘Cause’ Each Other’’
About the Author

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